fighting spam and scams on the Internet
"419" Scam – Advance Fee / Fake Lottery Scam
The so-called "419" scam is a type of fraud dominated by criminals from Nigeria and other countries in Africa. Victims of the scam are promised a large amount of money, such as a lottery prize, inheritance, money sitting in some bank account, etc.
Victims never receive this non-existent fortune but are tricked into sending their money to the criminals, who remain anonymous. They hide their real identity and location by using fake names and fake postal addresses as well as communicating via anonymous free email accounts and mobile phones.
Keep in mind that scammers DO NOT use their real names when defrauding people.
The criminals either abuse names of real people or companies or invent names or addresses.
Any real people or companies mentioned below have NO CONNECTION to the scammers!
Read more about such scams here or in our 419 FAQ. Use the Scam-O-Matic to verify suspect emails.
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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
- This email uses a separate reply address that is different from the sender address. Spammers use this to get replies even when the original spam sending accounts have been shut down. Also, sometimes the sender addresses are legitimate looking but fake and only the reply address is actually an email account controlled by the scammers.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Elizabeth Anna Johnson" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 12 Dec 2014 06:20:13 -0800
Subject: My Brethren in the Lord, How are you together with your family?
Dear Beloved in the Lord,
How are you together with your family? I hope you and your family is doing great by the special grace of the Lord. If so, praise the Lord to the Highest.
My Beloved Friend in the Lord, l has waited for your email as regards to my last email to you but your mails are not fort coming.
Hope all is well with you and your family? Please reply urgently if you did not receive my previous email so that l will resend it to you once again.
May the blessings of God be upon you and your family and guide you through this Christmas period as we celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.
My sincere and undiluted regards to you and your family and waiting to read from you urgently.
Your sister in the Lord
Mrs. Elizabeth Anna Johnson